Visas for individuals

Planning to migrate to Australia on a temporary or permanent basis? Have a job offer from an Australian employer or intend to migrate as a skilled worker to Australia?

Visapath will help you navigate your way through the jungle of options.

Skilled Migration and other working visas for individuals

Migrating to Australia is a dream for many people. The Australian Government offers individuals and their families a variety of visa options for short-term, long-term, and permanent residence. The demand for skilled workers in Australia is high. Both academic and (even more so) trade occupations are in high demand and have good prospects for obtaining an Australian visa.

Qualified professionals in particular are offered visa subclasses based on a points-tested basis, as these often lead to a permanent residency with a work permit. The points-test-based visa subclass is an interesting option for qualified workers because these are predominantly permanent visas. They also offer a great level of flexibility because applicants are not tied to one specific employer and job. The occupations and qualifications that are in demand are assessed and defined by the Australian Government, and are published in Skilled Occupations Lists on a national level. Furthermore, the Australian state and territory governments publish additional lists for occupations in demand in their specific region. These lists are all assessed and updated on a regular basis.

In addition to the Skilled Independent visas and State-Nominated Skilled visas, there is the option of Sponsored visas. If you are able to find an employer seeking to employ someone with your skills, or if you have relatives residing in Australia you may be eligible for one of these Work visas. This is another pathway to permanent residency. Those who only want to stay in Australia on a temporary basis may be eligible for further visa subclasses, even without a points test.

Did you know that in the permanent visas classes you are not tied to the occupation you nominated in your visa application? Once in Australia, you are completely free as to your choice of work.

The conditions for an Australian Skilled Migration visa are varied and complex; finding the right pathway is a very individual decision. Your Visapath consultant will help you navigate your way through the jungle of options and requirements, showing you realistic options, and guiding you through the whole process.

Below you will find a list of the most important visa options. We can assess your eligibility for these visa subclasses as part of our consulting process.

Quick Assessment – Free of charge. No obligation.

Permanent Residency visas

There are ways to obtain permanent residency in Australia. These differ in terms of the following requirements: 

  • Residency requirements (Australia-wide or state-specific)
  • Points-test requirements
  • Sponsorship requirements (by Australian state/territory, employer or Australian relative)

Requirements and conditions vary depending on the visa subclass. For each of the subclasses, a specific Skilled Occupations List is defined. For State-Sponsored visas, there may be additional criteria and requirements.

All those permanent residency visas have one thing in common: They enable the visa holder to stay in Australia indefinitely and have a 5-year travel facility attached. In order to be allowed to enter Australia after international travel, visa holders have to apply for a Resident Return visa after this 5 year period.

This visa is available for individuals with specific qualifications and experience. The Australian Government analyses the future demand for skilled workers and publishes the relevant occupations on the Skilled Occupations Lists.

A skills assessment is required prior to application for this visa. An assessing authority assesses whether the individual’s qualifications are applicable and relevant to the occupation in question.

For this particular visa subclass, eligible skilled workers are in demand Australia-wide. As such, the Australian Government grants applicants permanent residency status immediately without certain residency and workplace requirements. This visa comes with a maximum of flexibility and freedom.

Family members (spouse or de facto partner and children) can be included in the visa application as secondary applicants. They are granted the same visa status.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:

  • Aged under 45
  • Valid passport
  • Sufficient English language skills
  • Occupation is listed on the relevant list
  • Skills assessment
  • Points-test requirement
  • Health check
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth/li>
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa

Visa validity and essential visa conditions:

  • Permanent visa
  • Medicare access
  • Freedom of choice as to place of residence and place of work

The Australia state and territory Governments have the ability to set and manage the need for skilled workers themselves. They analyse their demand individually and publish their own Skilled Occupations Lists containing the occupations required in their specific areas. If the applicant is qualified for one of the listed occupations, they have a good chance of being nominated by a state or territory government.
A skills assessment is required prior to application for this visa. An assessing authority assesses whether a person’s qualifications are applicable and relevant to the occupation in question.


The Australian Government grants applicants permanent residency status immediately, but does require the applicant to demonstrate a commitment to settle in the sponsoring state or territory.

Family members (spouse or de facto partner and children) can be included in the visa application as secondary applicants. They are granted the same visa status.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:

  • Nomination of Australian state or territory government
  • Aged under 45
  • Valid passport
  • Sufficient English language skills
  • Occupation is listed on the relevant list
  • Skills assessment
  • Points-test requirement
  • Health check
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa

Visa validity and essential visa conditions:

  • Permanent visa
  • Medicare access
  • Commitment to reside and work in the sponsoring state or territory

This visa enables Australian employers, regardless of their place of business, to hire qualified workers from abroad. There is no points test required for this visa.

The first requirement for this visa subclass is that the applicant’s occupation features on the relevant list of eligible skilled occupations. Furthermore, the employer must agree to employ the applicant for at least two years in a full-time position and to sponsor the applicant for this visa.

Family members (spouse/de facto partner and children) can be included in the visa application as secondary applicants. They are granted the same visa status.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:

  • Aged under 45
  • Valid passport
  • Sufficient English language skills
  • Nomination by an Australian employer
  • Full-time contract for at least two years
  • Occupation is listed on the relevant list
  • At least three years of relevant work experience
  • Health check
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa

Visa validity and essential visa conditions:

  • Permanent visa
  • Medicare access

Did you know? If you have not made contact with an Australian employer yet, you can submit an expression of interest via SkillSelect? Australian employers use this online platform to select candidates for vacant positions and sponsor them for visas.

Employers based outside major cities often have difficulties finding suitably qualified personnel. In this case, the Australian Government gives them the option to employ workers from overseas for these positions. The relevant occupations are listed on specific Skilled Occupations Lists. There is no points test required for this visa.

The first requirement for this visa subclass is that the applicant’s occupation features on the relevant list of eligible skilled occupations. Furthermore, the employer must agree to employ the applicant for at least two years in a full-time position and to sponsor the applicant for this visa.

Family members (spouse/de facto partner and children) can be included in the visa application as secondary applicants. They are granted the same visa status.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:

  • Aged under 45
  • Valid passport
  • Sufficient English language skills
  • Nomination by an Australian employer situated in a regional area
  • Full-time contract for at least two years
  • Occupation is listed on the relevant list
  • At least three years of relevant work experience
  • Health check
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa

Visa validity and essential visa conditions:

  • Permanent visa
  • Medicare access

Did you know? If you have not made contact with an Australian employer yet, you can submit an expression of interest via SkillSelect? Australian employers use this online platform to select candidates for vacant positions and sponsor them for visas.

Temporary Work visas

If an individual does not meet the requirements for one of the permanent visas right from the start, or they plan to stay in Australia only on a temporary basis, a Temporary Work visa can be an option.
The main criteria for these visa subclasses (with the exception of the Working Holiday visa) are a specific employment background or qualification. Sponsorship by an Australian employer, a state or territory government, or an Australian relative is generally required for these Work visas in the form of a sponsorship and nomination. Every subclass carries its own requirements regarding place of residency and place of employment. Furthermore, visa holders are often bound to a certain employer and position. Careful consideration is necessary, therefore, when deciding which visa to opt for.

This visa was introduced in March 2018 to help employers fill short- and medium-term skills shortages. It substitutes the 457 visa, which was abolished by the Australian Government. If an employer is unable to find a suitably skilled worker for a certain position within Australia, the TSS visa is a good option for hiring skilled workers from abroad to temporarily fill these shortages. The relevant occupations are published on specific Skilled Occupations Lists, categorised into short- and medium-term demand.

The first requirement for this visa subclass is that the applicant’s occupation features on the relevant list of eligible skilled occupations. Furthermore, the employer must agree to employ the applicant for at least two years in a full-time position and to sponsor the applicant for this visa.

If an individual has a relevant occupation, sufficient experience, and an Australian employer who is willing to sponsor them, they can apply for this visa. Successful applicants are granted a temporary work permit for a maximum of four years. Depending on the occupation and the willingness of the employer, an extension can be granted or the applicant can apply for permanent residency (Employer Nomination Scheme visa subclass 186).

Family members (spouse/de facto partner and children) can be included in the visa application as secondary applicants. They are granted the same visa status.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:

  • Valid passport
  • Sufficient English language skills
  • Occupation is listed on the relevant list
  • Nomination by an Australian employer
  • Full-time contract for the relevant duration
  • At least two years of relevant work experience
  • Skills assessment (if requested)
  • Health check
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa

Visa validity and essential visa conditions:

  • Temporary Visa valid between one and four years
  • No change of employer or position
  • Private health insurance required
This temporary visa option is available for individuals who agree to settle and work in a specified area for a given time. The purpose of this visa subclass is to strengthen regions with low levels of population growth in Australia’s more regional areas and to encourage applicants and their families to settle in these areas.

There are two different pathways for this visa subclass. One option is through sponsorship by an Australian state or territory government. The second possibility is to be sponsored by a relative settled in Australia.

The available occupations for this visa subclass are listed on a specific Skilled Occupations List.

A skills assessment is required prior to application for this visa. An assessing authority assesses whether a person’s qualifications are applicable and relevant to the occupation in question.

Family members (spouse/de facto partner and children) can be included in the visa application as secondary applicants. They are granted the same visa status.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:
  • Nominated by an Australian state or territory government or relative settled in Australia
  • Aged under 45
  • Valid passport
  • Sufficient English language skills
  • Occupation is listed on the relevant list and skills assessment is successful
  • Points-test requirement
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa
Visa validity and essential visa conditions:
  • Temporary visa for four years
  • Private health insurance required
  • Obligation to work and reside in a specified area
If the applicant meets the required conditions, there is the option to apply for permanent residency after two years. To do so, the applicant must have resided for at least two years and have worked for at least one year in a full-time position within the specified region. In this case, application for a skilled regional visa (subclass 887) is possible. There are no age or sponsorship requirements. A points test is not required.

The Working Holiday visa is an uncomplicated, straightforward visa option for young people aged between 18 and 30 from eligible countries for this visa subclass.
This visa is not available to everyone, however; it depends on the nationality of the applicant. Only citizens of countries with a bilateral agreement with Australia are eligible for this visa. Among these are, for example, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, France, the Netherlands, Ireland, Sweden, Belgium, Estonia, Finland, Denmark, Norway and Canada.

This visa is not only suitable for backpackers but also provides an opportunity for the holder to gain experience within the Australian workforce and make initial contact with employers. There are no restrictions as to the types of jobs Working Holiday visa holders can apply for, as long as they are not working for more than six months for the same employer. All manner of work is permitted and possible, from informal, occasional jobs to office work of all kinds.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:

  • Aged between 18 and 30
  • Valid passport issued by an eligible country
  • Evidence of sufficient funding to support the person’s stay and travel (on request)
  • Purpose of stay is predominantly holiday
  • General ability to work
  • Health check (on request)
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa

Visa validity and essential visa conditions:

  • Temporary visa for max. 12-month stay
  • Participation in study programs, courses, and trainings for up to four months
  • Work rights (max. six months for the same employer)
  • Private health insurance required

Generally speaking, a Working Holiday visa can only be applied for once in a person’s lifetime and is valid for a maximum of 12 months. Under certain circumstances, however, it is possible to extend the stay for another year and apply for a second Working Holiday visa. The applicant has to provide evidence that he or she has spent at least three months in regional Australia doing specified work within the agricultural, fishery, mining or construction industries.

More information is available on our page Working Holiday Visa.

You can apply for the Working Holiday visa via our online application form.

This temporary visa is available for applicants intending to participate in workplace-based training for registration purposes or for membership in occupational organisations. The specific occupations are published on the relevant list.

For this visa subclass, sponsorship by the institution providing the training is required.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:

  • Valid passport
  • Sufficient English language skills
  • Sponsorship by institution or official body for the training
  • Relevant qualifications and job experience required for the training
  • Training is workplace-based and necessary for registration or membership purposes

Visa validity and essential visa conditions:

  • Temporary visa for the duration of the training (usually max. 12 months)

Various options and requirements exist for this visa, depending on the institution, association, etc. These can vary significantly. This has to be assessed individually.

This temporary visa is available for applicants planning to do short-term, highly specialised work in Australia. There are different pathways to obtaining this visa.

This visa is available for applicants planning to participate in a conference, meeting or trade show. It is also an option for highly specialised workers with explicit knowledge and skills required for specific projects or installation tasks.

The most important visa requirements at a glance:
  • Valid passport
  • Qualification or experience pertaining to the assigned activity
  • Evidence that the stay in Australia is required
  • No intention of working in Australia
  • Applicant is not a convicted criminal
  • No outstanding debts to the Commonwealth
  • No prior refusal or cancellation of an Australian visa
  • Application has to be made from outside Australia
Visa validity and essential visa conditions:
  • Temporary visa (usually max. six weeks)
  • Work permit (restricted to the nominated activity)

Due to the fact that certain activities are not permitted within the realms of the visas covered above, or in the event that processing periods are too long for the applicant’s needs, the Australian Government also offers a variety of special-category visas. The requirements for these visas vary significantly, and applications are addressed on a case-specific basis.

Examples: For an artist or a film/movie production employee needing to travel to Australia, the Temporary Activity visa (subclass 408) is the most likely visa option; a member of a foreign country government can apply for a Temporary Work (International Relations) visa (subclass 403).

These special categories vary significantly in terms of requirements and validity. We will help you to find the correct visa option. Contact us.

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